Country #94 - Portugal

The European Balcony

I woke up around 9am and had another great breakfast at Dar Ayniwen. The weather was not as nice today so I ate inside but it was still quite the beautiful setting. After breakfast I met with Stephane again, this time to take some pictures. I also met his assistant who was so nice as well! They gave be a necklace as a goodbye gift and, though I hated to say goodbye to such a magical retreat of a hotel, I headed off to the airport. The Marrakesh airport is brand new and has a very cool and modern design. I sat in the reclined chairs in the lounge for a few minutes before heading to my gate to go to Lisbon, Portugal!

I absolutely love Lisbon and am very excited to be going back on this trip. In my opinion it is one of the most beautiful capital cities in all of Europe. My flight was a few hours and I arrived in Lisbon around 2pm. Immigration was a breeze and so was taking the metro. It’s nice to be in a city that I’ve been in before because I know what I need to do to get around and enjoy the city and I also know the general layout of the city. I arrived at my beautiful hotel, Heritage Avenida Liberdade Hotel, which was right in the heart of Lisbon. My room was stunning and was the perfect place to relax. Though I had time to get out I decided to spend a few hours just getting caught up on everything and planning for the next few days that I would again be in Africa. I loved relaxing in the room and enjoying the absolutely ideal weather. My room had European balconies and I left the doors open while I worked. It was really quite perfect! Thank you so much to Heritage Avenida Liberdade Hotel for sponsoring this night of my trip.

I headed out for dinner a few hours later. I had developed a bit of an upset stomach (I’m assuming from all of the weird foods I have had over the past few days) so that was another reason for staying in today. I hadn’t eaten all day and was really craving a burger so I ate at a nice burger spot called The B Temple. I had a burger, good fries, and amazing aioli sauce. After dinner I walked around the area for a bit. I was wondering why it looked so familiar at first, and then I realized it was right by where I stayed in Lisbon two years ago. On my walk I grabbed some gelato which was my first gelato in quite some time. Boy, do I love Europe and its plethora of gelato! The nice weather made it extra enjoyable. I also stumbled into the world’s oldest operating bookstore, Bertrand Bookshop, which was a random but interesting find. I headed back to my hotel to get what would be my last good night of sleep for a few nights. Tomorrow I will spend the morning exploring Lisbon before I head to Guinea-Bissau!

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The Belém Tower

I got a great night of sleep and then had a tasty breakfast at Heritage Avenida Liberdade Hotel before heading out for the day. I only had a few hours in Lisbon so I decided to head to my favorite part of the city, Belém. Belém has many famous sites and is a great place to spend a day or more exploring. I took the tram from the city center all the way to Belém. I got off in front of the famous Jerónimos Monastery. It was so tempting to go inside and see the beautiful monastery, but I had a different plan for the day. I walked towards the water where I passed the Padrão dos Descobrimentos statue (you can go to the top for a great view of Lisbon) and the Museu Coleção Berardo. Museu Coleção Berardo was one of my absolute favorite parts of my last visit to Lisbon and I really wish I had had more time to visit it today. It is an incredible modern art museum!

I continued to walk along the water until I reached my destination, Belém Tower. I saw Belém Tower from the outside last time on my last visit but it unfortunately closed right as I arrived last time. So, I was determined to see it today! Belém Tower was built in 1519 for defensive purposes. It is truly amazing how preserved it is! When I arrived I was so close to being put off by the long line, but I am very glad that I stuck with it. The line didn’t move at all for almost twenty minutes, and then all of the sudden I was inside.

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Belém Tower was so cool on the inside. There were multiple floors but the best part was the top. It was amazing that a tower built as a defense system could be so beautiful, but it truly was. I really enjoyed walking all through it, and luckily it did not take too long as I had to start heading back to my hotel as soon as I finished. I took the tram back, grabbed my things, and then took the metro back to the airport. When I got to the airport I waited in Lisbon’s really cool lounge for a bit before I headed to board my flight for Guinea-Bissau. It was a short but sweet visit to Lisbon, and I can’t wait to visit again soon!

94 countries down, 103 to go.

For more information on Portugal click here to read my guide.

To learn more about Heritage Avenida Liberdade Hotel click here.